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Multi-Location Brands Struggle with Local Search

Posted on 12.15.2014

A new study commissioned by SIM Partners is shedding light on the struggle multi-location brands have with implementing local search.

The November 2014 study, which is titled “Uncovering the Benefits of Local Search Marketing” and was conducted by Forrester Consulting, reveals that while marketers believe local search strategies are a critical component of staying connected with customers, their efforts are limited when it comes to implementing these strategies. 

“It was highly interesting to see this paradox where marketers know that local search can have a meaningful impact on their brand, and yet they are consistently not taking advantage of it in any meaningful way,” said Jon Schepke, CEO, SIM Partners. “By and large, marketers have adopted a ‘wait-and-see’ approach to implementing local search, which means they are letting all the inherent benefits of the strategy pass them by.”

According to the study, one of the biggest roadblocks for marketers is that they do not feel there is a clear definition for local search. Three other major limitations that are keeping marketing professionals from fully embracing local search include a lack of experience with local search, a need for more education on local search and inadequate access to local search tools. That said, the study found that marketers who have implemented local search strategies reported measurable benefits, such as improved brand awareness and quality leads, as well as lift over traditional search programs.

“Local search is the next digital battleground for brands, but approaching it is foreign to many marketers, so it’s understandable that they might be a little tentative about incorporating it into their strategies,” said Schepke. “Based on our research and experience with customers, brands that have created and implemented a local search strategy are reaping big benefits by owning the market as well as increasing the quality of leads.”

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